Forget the exotics of the Botanics, turn your back on the Spring flowers along the Backs, consider not the colour of the college gardens and pass by the city's parks and public gardens; today we'll enter the enigmatic Empty Common.....
Those of you who are familiar with our English cities have probably realised already that we're in the allotments of fair Albion's isle.
When the Industrial Revolution swept through England in the the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the houses constructed for the miners, factory workers and those who were employed by the railways were crammed in as tightly as possible with little space for gardens. Even in towns like Cambridge, hardly the most industrialised part of the land, there was a need for gardens where families could grow a few vegetables for the table.
Of course, times move along so you won't find it's all men in cloth caps and rubber boots nowadays. But I don't know who you'll find among the rhubarb and old sheds these days. I heard the sound of hammering, there were cars parked at the gates, I even got a whiff of pipe smoke but the allotments were as deserted as the Mary Celeste.
You can't help but wonder though, can you? Perhaps an old man is growing tulips to take home to the bedside of his sick wife...or maybe he sells them to a local florist....
Maybe an artist goes beachcombing up in North Norfolk and brings home driftwood to construct his garden shed....
Maybe teddy bears come down here for a picnic......no, probably not.
These makeshift sheds are so cheaply constructed for a good reason. All I take is photographs and all I allow to run wild is my imagination, but others are not so harmless. Theft by rabbits (six foot tall ones with two legs) is always a possibility when gardens are so far from the houses.
Down at the end of the allotments is a Community Garden which seeks to involve an even wider range of individuals and groups in growing their own produce - schools, the disabled and others. Someone has painted this wonderful shed.
Now I've delayed myself so much that I'm not going to get to the Botanic Gardens this week, though I've still got a few more days to make my April visit. I told you I'd get diverted from my intention to photograph there each month.
There was still no one around as I left the allotments or at least I don't think there was. But as I pushed open the little gate I'm sure I could hear the unmistakable sound of someone playing the bagpipes. Mysteriouser and mysteriouser!